Consul Normal Mr. Sunjay Sudhir


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“I am open to meet and engage with the community.”
Just almost over two months into his new role and the new Consul General, Mr. Sunjay Sudhir, is already establishing his presence with the NSW State government, businesses and community alike. Seeing the successful end of CeBit held recently in Olympic Park, Mr. Sudhir got the sense of the growing and strong Indian diaspora making a positive contribution to Australia. Another interesting feature of Mr. Sudhir is that he quite young in terms of other CG’s to have visited Sydney and it is hoped that this youthful flair will pump fresh blood into the ever-growing important relation between India and Australia.

Here is a brief chat with The Indian Telegraph

Arijit Banarji (AB):Thank you for your time. How long has it been settling to your new work environment?

Sunjay Sudhir (CG):It has been over two months now, settling in well. As you already know, I was engaged with the community from my very first day in Sydney, with the concluding days of CeBit followed by the Ministerial Consultative Committee meeting where I got to understand the multifaceted success and issues facing the Indian community.

AB: How differently would you be approaching the community? The previous CG Mr. Goel, was popular in bringing new trade investments and also for being able to bring the Regional PBD to Sydney.

CG:I’ve just settled into my role and I know the scope of work between the bilateral relations is only strengthening. Being the representative of the government, I am focussed in improving and addressing any business and trade and other investment opportunities from India into Australia and from here to India.

AB:What about addressing any community affairs? Any issues?

CG:That will be between the Indian residents here and the local, state and Federal government. We will of course intervene when we believe our citizens are at risk and issues needs to be addressed but if it is a domestic matter then it is with the responsibility with the local authorities. The Consulate will not be used nor should come across for furthering anybody’s or any associations’ agenda. If there is an issue occurring in India then as representative of the Government we will accept any proposal from the Indian community here and send it across to New Delhi.

AB:What do you think needs to be done with the many associations?

CG:There needs to be more unity. I think it safe to say that your publication is already making the right noise in that direction. The Sydney office looks after matters from NSW and South Australia. We have a wide jurisdiction and to attend every one of the association’s events or functions cannot be undertaken by one CG and they must know that. We definitely need to collect together under one association.

AB:You mentioned your focus will be primarily in improving the bilateral relation, government to government, and trade plays a big role. What advice will you give any new Indian business venture to Australia? I draw your attention to the success of Adani group on one hand, and the coalmine crisis by Gujarat NRE, now owned by Jindal Group.

CG:These two examples are commodities based companies. The prices of commodities as anyone knows keep fluctuating. For any venture capital, or for that matter, any business initiative, one must do full research of the country, the laws, rules and regulations, cost of wages, appropriate expenses from running your business etc. Each business will have its own unique set of problems. The Jindal Steel group you mentioned is faced with declining demand for coal and the falling dollar value to it. It might come up and maybe they can be back. It is up to the company and their associated partners and stakeholders to decide the future of the company. We cannot intervene there as we do not know how the business is run. Of course as an Indian, I do not wish to see Indian businesses failing but if there are some existing problems that have not been addressed then it is with the regulators to decide the future fate of any business.

AB:Lastly, a very personal question, what is your favourite movie and song? I’ll keep it broad to include both Bollywood and Hollywood influences.

CG: (Laughs) It is a difficult choice. Dr. Zhivago comes to mind as a memorable piece, so too Sholay. These two have been in their own ways marked a different epoch of cinemas. They have been able to maintain that sense of charm even today •
Consul General Mr. Sunjay Sudhir
“I am open to meet and engage with the community.”

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